Minimising postage

Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts

Minimising postage

Postby wqlava1 » Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:41 pm

I often ask people I have bought things from over various internet secondhand sources to minimize postage by reducing the packaging.

The worst was a pair of secondhand SPD MTB pedals that came wrapped in 2 layers of bubble wrap and rattling around in a box that could have held 10 pair. They were cheap to start with and the seller didn't get charged for "cubic weight" but volume and weight make a difference.

On the other hand, I can wrap a pair of 700c wheels together in carefully tailored cardboard to barely make it inside Aust Post's guidelines as one item and go interstate for the price of 4kg. Thank goodness that most post office clerks haven't done enough geometry to calculate the volume of a complex parcel correctly!

Shoe boxes are deadly for cubic weight charges. I just bought some bike shoes that are at my suggestion coming wrapped together in half a roll of kitchen cling wrap with a bit of packing tape around the outside to finish it off and hold the label.

It's partly cost, and partly minimizing the environmental impact of the extra jet fuel to fly packaging around. Before I get pinged by someone about buying overseas cheaply and paying transport instead of buying locally and paying more, my approach is that the overall environmental impact is proportional to cost.

Anyway, do many of the rest of you work on packaging to get the best prices both buying and selling?
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by BNA » Thu Dec 20, 2012 9:00 pm

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Re: Minimising postage

Postby boss » Thu Dec 20, 2012 9:00 pm

Just saying, but...

Aus post doesn't cube items that aren't rectangular. They do have a maximum girth for items. Items that aren't cubed go on absolute weight, volume is disregarded.

Nothing to do with the intelligence of their staff. Although, having to deal with them on a daily basis due to my own business, I know that there are some great Aus post staff... And some slightly dimmer specimens.

I do understand where you are coming from, there's a lot of waste. I super he man hours in packing oddly shaped parcels would be more than what could be saved. But I could be wrong.
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Re: Minimising postage

Postby brentono » Tue Jan 01, 2013 9:48 am

wqlava1 wrote:On the other hand, I can wrap a pair of 700c wheels together in carefully tailored cardboard to barely make it inside Aust Post's guidelines as one item and go interstate for the price of 4kg. Thank goodness that most post office clerks haven't done enough geometry to calculate the volume of a complex parcel correctly!


Have done as you say
"carefully tailored cardboard to barely make it inside Aust Post's guidelines
as one item and go interstate for the price of 4kg" and got through, myself. :D
Then 2 weeks later, all the same conditions, and was charged by Volume. :roll: :evil:
So meh- I boils down to "post office clerks" and their attitude and the day their having,
that was my summation. :wink:
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Re: Minimising postage

Postby Ross » Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:47 am

My primary concern when sending stuff in the mail/by courier is to protect it from damage and then to make it fit in the smallest box or envelope possible. I generally refrain from sending large or awkward sized items because a lot of the time it's not viable (the freight/postage costs more than the item I'm selling).
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